Mark Memmott

With the 2020 campaign underway, here are some reminders from the Ethics Handbook about publicly expressing political opinions.

The section on impartiality has the guidance and it applies to NPR employees inside and outside the newsroom (more on that below). Some of the highlights:

- "We don't put political bumper stickers on our cars."

- "We don't sign political petitions."

- "We don't donate money to candidates."

If you need to refer to the proposed citizenship question for the 2020 census, contact Hansi Lo Wang or Luis Clemens before doing so. One of them should review what you plan to say or write because the history of such questions is complicated.

They will tell you, for example, that:

As Newscast and Colorado Public Radio have reported, the 16-year-old suspect in the STEM school shooting is being charged as an adult – as is the 18-year-old suspect.

As we've covered the new abortion law in Georgia and legislation in Alabama, we've followed long-standing guidance very well. Thank you to all involved.

For those new to the subject, that guidance about abortion and related topics is collected in our Intranet "radio" style guide. We'll attach it below.

As we report on measles outbreaks and outbreaks related to other vaccine-preventable diseases, it's important to stick to the science — and to use neutral language in describing peoples' positions.

Media outlets, schools, interest groups, movie studios and others often approach NPR journalists to ask about rebroadcasting, reprinting or otherwise reusing our material.

All such requests must be forwarded to "Permissions@npr.org." That directs them to our colleagues in Legal and begins a process that will include consultation with the Standards & Practices editor and, in many cases, other senior editors.

In a tweet this morning, the president uses the word "bullshit" to characterize some of the "statements made in the 'Report' about me."

As with yesterday's guidance about an F-bomb, our position is that we're not going to say the word on the air. If we do refer to the line, we can say he called some of the statements "B.S.," but should make clear that he used the actual word.

There is evidence in the Mueller report that the president asked some aides to lie about his actions.

When reporting about this, frame it as "evidence," not proof, that the aides were "asked to lie." And attribute the evidence to Mueller's investigation.

We are not going to repeat on the air this quote attributed to President Trump in the Mueller report:

"I'm fucked."

When talking about it, we can clean up the quote by turning it into "I'm F-ed." But we will also need to make clear to listeners that he used the actual word.

Meanwhile, less is more. "I'm F-ed" and discussions of that quote do not need to be part of all our Mueller-related reports.

Note: online we write "I'm f***ed."

Like an Election Day, this is another time to remind everyone about the social media rules of the road when there's a big story about to break.

Borrowing from our post from last November, here is guidance on how to (and not to) respond to news regarding the redacted Mueller report:

-- You will be tempted to tweet, post to Facebook and otherwise express yourself on social media. There's probably a lot you'd like to say ...

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